What is the Difference Between Structural And Non-Structural Plywood?
Structural plywood and non-structural plywood are two types of plywood commonly available on the market, with each type playing a different role in a variety of applications and projects. Structural plywood is designed to provide superior strength and rigidity, making it suitable for heavy-duty external applications and structural support. On the other hand, non-structural plywood is intended for lighter uses such as cabinetmaking or furniture construction, where a more flexible material is preferred.
The main difference between structural and non-structural plywood lies in their thicknesses and core constructions. Structural grades often contain more layers (or plies) than non-structural varieties, resulting in higher levels of stability and strength over time. The inner core of structural grade plywood can also be manufactured from denser wood species than those used for non-structural grades, providing added resistance against wear and tear.
Features of Structural Plywood
When it comes to gluing components together, structural grade plywood can also withstand greater amounts of stress thanks to its higher adhesive strength. This makes it an excellent choice for projects requiring greater structural integrity, such as roof trusses or even scaffolding platforms. On the other hand, non-structural grade plywood is not recommended for external or high load-bearing applications due to its weaker bond strength levels.
Aesthetics are also an important factor when choosing between these two types of plywood. Structural grade varieties tend to have sharper edges than their counterparts because they’re made from hardwoods that have been cut thinner than those used in other types of plywood. This gives them a more refined look that can help create a more dramatic effect in certain projects like cabinetry or shelving units. Non-structural options usually feature softer edges due to their thicker wood lamination which helps create a softer visual impression overall.
Finally, cost will likely be another deciding factor when choosing between these two types of materials as well; since structural grades require additional layers and denser materials during manufacturing processes they tend to be slightly more expensive compared to their counterparts. However, if you’re looking for added durability or need your project to bear significant loads then investing in structural grade plywood can be worth the extra upfront cost in the long run.
When it comes to plywood, both structural and non-structural grades can be used depending on the needs of your project. By understanding their differences, you’ll be able to make an informed decision when deciding which type is right for you.